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Game Board iterations

5 replies [Last post]
Joined: 11/05/2015

Just a quick question- those who have created a game board that needed playtesting/iteration- what resources have you used to allow quick changes?

My game board is just complex enough - imagine the complexity of the Scythe game board - that I need a program that can edit/rearrange/change assets easily as each hex is slightly unique and I need to tweak distribution/location/map size etc.

Also free is nice.

Any experience with this?

let-off studios
let-off studios's picture
Joined: 02/07/2011

Something I've used in the past that seems VERY user-friendly to me is MS PowerPoint and/or the OpenOffice variant. In both cases, it's a drag-and-drop interface, what-you-see-is-what-you-get, and you can save and print out multiple iterations in the same slide show.

There are pre-made shapes of various types included, ranging from straight lines to circles to starbursts, for rapid prototyping. The ability to add a text box anywhere is extremely useful as well.

OpenOffice is no cost and open source, should you not have access to a version of MS Office.

I also invested in a single-page laminator. It allows for repeated playtests on a more durable surface, as well as one that works with dry-erase markers. It cost me less than $50 at a local office supply store.

Laminator pouches are also affordable, and in any case a printer and laminator are much quicker and drastically more affordable than a print-on-demand service.

Joined: 11/05/2015

SVG-edit is what I ended up using today-

It's a free webapp photoshop/illustrator lite type program.

Works perfect as it allows layers, which is the main functionality the other programs I had been using were lacking. That lets me edit different aspects of the board separately.

Or "sketch" something out and do a nicer version of the top with the sketch as the guide.

Very handy

Joined: 12/22/2015
php script

I normally have a base image and write a PHP script to overlay and position the other images on top of it.

Then I just modify a string in the script to change positions (or if no positions change, run the same script with the new images).

For the lineup of double-sided items I use every other line commented with redefined variables and reversed images for the back side. Easy to be sure of the lineup this way. After running the scripts I mirror image the backside images.

JohnBrieger's picture
Joined: 11/04/2016
I'm a big illustrator fan

It's expensive ($20/month if you get it alone), but there is a reason it's the gold standard in vector editing software.

Has powerful capabilities for creating new assets, the ability to export in every format imaginable, and amazing grouping, layering, and editing features.

bluesea's picture
Joined: 07/28/2008
I just invested in Affinity

I just invested in Affinity Designer. No subscription. Just $49.99. It's a bit like inkscape, but not as slow or buggy.

Each has features the other can't do. Inkscape is much better for arranging and alignment. And inkscape has a built-in bitmap to vector conversion. Affinity has much better snapping and is significantly more responsive, at least on my system. I tend to work between the two as I learn affinity. Also, I can import dxf files into inkscape, but not affinity, which is a big point of contention with the affinity user base.

Affinity has free trial. It's well worth giving it a shot.

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